Unlike last years team which ran out to a 12-0 record, and got as high as 8th before crashing back to earth and ending the year unranked this team feels different for whatever reason. The Bearcats already have three top 50 RPI wins (in five opportunities) on the year, after having just 5 in 15 attempts a year ago. At this point the Bearcats are, barring a collapse of epic proportions, a lock for the NCAA tournament.
The defense is playing at a normal level for the Mick Cronin era, meaning a top 25 group nationally. But the biggest difference is the offense which is way up over last year in terms of production. Last year the offensive efficiency finished at 101.4 which is essentially average nationally. This year that same figure is 110.3, and it is getting better holding steady.
Holding steady is actually a vast improvement over a season ago, when the offensive production fell off a cliff as soon as the Bearcats entered Big East play. It seems that this year we are getting the team we expected to see a season ago. Lets see how high these Bearcats can climb in the polls.